The Office of Sponsored Projects (OSP) Pre-Award reviews and submits all proposals to funding agencies for externally sponsored programs in research, instruction, and other public service programs.  OSP supports and advances the university’s mission by providing leadership and expertise in the area of pre-award research administration.

Pre-Award Services

The OSP Pre-Award Specialists help faculty and staff navigate the successful submission of their proposals by providing support in proposal and budget development and proposal review and submission.

OSP Pre-Award expertise and support:

  • Sponsor Guidelines/Solicitation Analysis and Assessment
  • Proposal and budget building guidance in InfoEd and sponsor portals
  • Proposal and budgetary review to ensure compliance with sponsor guidelines, federal and state law, university policies, procedures, and compliance regulations. OSP has prepared Proposal Preparation Checklists for major sponsors.
  • Critical analysis of sponsor program solicitations, guidelines, and policies
  • Careful review and analysis of the budget and budget justification for accuracy, congruency, reasonableness of cost, allocability, and allowability as well as compliance with sponsor guidelines, federal and state regulations, and university policies and procedures
  • Complete the final submission package, upload final documents and forms, and submit to the sponsor
  • Act as content and sponsor submission systems expert and liaison with sponsoring agencies
  • Review and submit Just-in-Time requests, NIH progress reports, and revised budgets
  • Monitor sponsor webpages and listservs for changes and updates to policies and procedures and communicates developments to the university’s research community
  • Work closely with colleagues in the OSP Post-Award to support and co-manage the lifecycle of a sponsored project from proposal development, review and submission through Post-Award management of the award


Proposal Processing Timeline and Deadlines

To take full advantage of Pre-Awards services and qualify for priority proposal processing, a PI must follow the timelines listed below.

  • Full Review: When a final proposal (i.e., final budget, justification, draft proposal/SOW) is fully routed and received in OSP 5 business days or more prior to the Submission Deadline, OSP will check all of the items as part of a Full Review, and will work with the Project Team to resolve any issues prior to submission. Proposals receiving a Full Review will be compliant with the sponsor’s guidelines and will be submitted by the Submission Deadline.
  • Limited (Institutional Only) Review: If a final proposal is received in OSP with fewer than 5 days but more than 2 days prior to the Submission Deadline, OSP will conduct a Limited (Institutional Only) Review. OSP will only check the proposal for compliance with URI requirements, and the proposal will be submitted by the Submission Deadline. For all proposals receiving the Limited (Institutional Only) Review, there is no guarantee that the proposal will comply with the sponsor’s guidelines, nor that URI will be able to accept the resulting award.
  • At-Risk: If a final proposal is received in OSP with 2 or fewer business days prior to the Submission Deadline, they are At Risk, and there is no guarantee that the proposal will be submitted by the sponsor’s deadline.

OSP submit in the order received, barring any complications found during final checks. Please be aware that the office is open until 5:00 pm. In the cases where proposals are due outside normal business hours (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.), 5 p.m. EST of the day of the deadline should be considered the official submission deadline. Proposals processed within the expected timeline will take precedence over those that are outside the expected timeline and will be handled on a first-come first-served basis.


Special Circumstances

Pre‐Award may communicate specific proposal processing deadlines for certain large, multi‐institutional, complex agency RFPs. Revised timelines will be developed on a case‐by‐case basis and issued by the Associate Director of Pre‐Award to the PIs. 

Early notification and processes are required for a proposal or funding application that involves any of the following uncommon circumstances:

  • The sponsor or prime sponsor is a foreign entity
  • The proposal is for a U.S. federal government contract — not a grant or cooperative agreement
  • The sponsor requires the submission of a small business subcontracting plan, an intellectual property management plan, a laboratory safety plan, or any other plan or document that must be developed or coordinated outside of OSP
  • The proposal requests funding in excess of $5 million of direct costs per budget year
  • A purpose of the proposal is to establish a new URI center or institute
  • The proposal involves construction or renovation